Like all relationships, ours started off with that spark of something different and appealing. You had convenience, no taxes, and sweet baggers who would help me out to my car when the kids were just about all I could handle– and I looked like a worn out frazzled mess. There was no judgement in your sparkling aisles as I nervously handed the cashiers my ID card, all shiny and new from lack of use or being lost under the car seat for months. You accepted me as I was and I was so deeply thankful for it.
Then, like all good and sweet beginnings, we got used to each other. I grumbled and complained when on the 1st and 15th of the month your aisles became packed with other families doing their pay-day shopping. I cursed and fumed as those bags of fresh spinach I had JUST purchased smelled foul and soggy when opened. Then I fumed again when your still polite and smiling workers refused to let me buy just ONE gallon of milk because even though I had just been there the day before, my ID card had somehow gone on a journey to the far reaches of back seat and I couldn’t find it.
So I grew distant and when the opportunity came to not have the convenience of your no taxes and your sweet baggers- I jumped on it with the thought “the aisles are greener on the other side”. And for a while they were! I justified my lack of contact with you by saying it was too far to make the drive. I’d save in gas what I spent at your stores. Your prices weren’t really that great compared to the some of the other alternatives, and when I was diagnosed with a allergy that meant I had to limit my shopping to certain foods, well, it was the final nail in the coffin.
Until a few weeks ago that is when I happened to have an actual need to make the drive to the post in order to pick up a few things from your store. You were exactly as I had left you, shiny aisles, friendly baggers, ID checkers, and all. And yet, you were different or maybe I was just seeing you with fresh eyes. For low and behold as I walked up and down your specialty sections I could see where you had made a concerned effort to expand your selections, to appeal to the appetite of eye and taste, and more important than anything to me- you offered a wide variety of foods I could actually eat! Where I would hunt and scrounge, hoping to find amidst trips to several stores a few things comparable to my old way of eating, you offered it all in one convenient location. It was almost like you did it knowing I’d come back one day.
So, I am sorry for breaking up with you my dear sweet Commissary. While I can’t promise that our relationship will ever be what it used to be (sorry but the drive time still means it’s going to be a long distance relationship) I can say that whenever i’m in need of something I just can’t find at my regular grocery stores, I will not hesitate to come knocking on your doors.
A gluten-free, nut-free, egg-free, sesame-free Allergen Cooking Mama
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